Follow our story from the start! - click "newer posts" at the end of each page

4.19.2011

The other side speaks up

Today, Debbie's sister, Auntie, posted a couple of responses to recent posts. Here's what she had to say (I'll post my responses after):

"I don't understand why you push your own fears and self doubts on the boys... you compare them to you as if you are one in the same... you are not. you may see certain similarities in their behavior that reminds you of a distant version of yourself, but by no means do they suffer the same hurts that you did. You are not the only one who loves those boys. You are not the only one that supplied them with the items they needed when your son and my sister fell short of the mark. You are a true narcissist. Some day the boys will read the paperwork on you, Marcia, Debbie, etc... I have nothing to fear on that day, nor do my parents... you however, do. Think hard to the name that you referred to your grandson as... the one that is on public record? The name that the judge even scoffed at? Kit will see that one day... and one day Tio will see his paperwork as well. Clear your conscience before the truth comes out.

it was not i nor my sister that called the state.... did it ever occur to u that it could be the school? or Marcia trying to wedge a foot in? either way i cannot believe that you made this public... do you have no shame?!"

My response:
First off, I suspect that anyone who writes autobiographically might be guilty of a certain amount of narcissism. That said, a true narcissist wouldn't be concerned about the welfare of anyone else but themselves. I wouldn't be taking Kit to therapy, Tio to ballgames, or reading bedtime stories to Doc. I doubt, if this was all about me, that I would even be concerned with their interests or needs whatsoever and that would be clear in what I write. Further, if I was trying to push my own doubts and fears on the boys, I wouldn't be nurturing them to develop their own interests or learn independent thinking. If this was all about me, why would have spent so much time getting Tio into baseball with countless hours of catch (which Isn't my thing) or playing dolls and make-up with Kit (which is the total opposite and still not my thing). Instead, I would have pushed them to read and play music and daydream without end. While it's true that I am introspective and express that in my blog to give readers a better understanding me, the boys are nothing like me and if you read the blog posts, it is obvious that I am not trying to remake them in my image.

Secondly, I'm fully aware that you and your family love them and they love you. The frustration that I discuss in these pages relates to the apparent inability to quell their out of control behavior when they visit your parent's house. It is unhealthy. Don't take my word for it. Talk to any therapist, pediatrician, or counselor and they will all tell you that kids need limits, control, and expectations. They even appreciate them. I hope that you're not suggesting that setting limits and expectations for them is narcissism.

Third, someone in your family did call DCYF (the child welfare agency) to spark an investigation. Only you folks knew the claims that the investigator described: diaper rash and Kit tripping on the stairs when he was half asleep. You took them to the emergency room six months ago for the rash (God knows why) and Kit only told your family about his fall which resulted in no injury. The school has no record of these things and Marcia has no contact with Kit or Doc to know anything about it. The shame isn't in making this public, it's in putting the boys through it in the first place.

In the end, Auntie, I don't mind if you don't like me, but please don't invent stories about me. I'll cop to having plenty of real flaws, you don't have to make up new ones. I don't have a clue what name you are referring to or what "the boys will read the paperwork on you" means. However, giving up my freedom, compromising my marriage, and donating my retirement fund and the next 10 years of my life to the welfare of these kids defies the definition of narcissism.

I'll be happy to post responses you may have if you refrain from throwing insults and unsubstantiated claims.